Finding an oven range and cooktop that best suits your lifestyle are the key ingredients of the perfect kitchen. Before shopping for these appliances, do your research to ensure the stove you choose for your kitchen is right for you.
1. Measure, measure, measure. Check the dimensions of the range you're interested in to help ensure a proper fit. Look for installation instructions on each range for exact cutout dimensions.
2. Cabinetry matters, too. Ranges can be freestanding, slide-in or drop-in. Freestanding is best if either side isn't next to a cabinet, whereas a slide-in is best if it's between two cabinets. The drop-in is fueled by electricity only and can be partially supported by cabinets on either side.
3. Gourmet pro or grab and go? Home chefs should look for high performance and precision features. Many prefer the performance of gas or the precision of induction. For the everyday cook, convenience and flexibility may be more important. Consider a smooth-top radiant cooktop for easy-to-clean functionality.
4. Count the burners. For most people, a cooktop with four burners will work fine. But if you love to cook, have a large family and entertain often, you may want the professional appearance and flexibility of five or more burners.
5. Feel the temperature rising. Look for a cooktop with a power burner to quickly bring foods to a boil. Or try a simmer burner to prepare light sauces using low and even heat. If you use basic pots and pans, a dual-element burner is perfect for controlled simmering with small pans, and then you can use the outer ring for larger pans.